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50 of 52 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A sensual wash of sound....
Endulge in this deep & magical journey of sounds created well over 25 years ago on very primitive equipment.
I fell in love with Rubycon the first time I heard it, it had all the right ingredience to take you to other places and beyond which sadly over the passing years TD, for me, slowly failed to do. Don't get me wrong TD has made some great music since 1975...
Published on 17 Mar. 2002 by Mr. R. Sheath

versus
2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Poor quality picture disc vinyl pressing
This is a review for the Virgin 40th Anniversary vinyl picture disc issue (Oct. 2013).

There is a manufacturing fault that means that there are smudges on the vinyl (they look like scuffs but aren't). I expect better quality for the money I've paid so I've returned mine for a refund.
Published 19 months ago by Westo


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50 of 52 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A sensual wash of sound...., 17 Mar. 2002
By 
Mr. R. Sheath "srickythered2" (Southsea, Hampshire UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Rubycon (Audio CD)
Endulge in this deep & magical journey of sounds created well over 25 years ago on very primitive equipment.
I fell in love with Rubycon the first time I heard it, it had all the right ingredience to take you to other places and beyond which sadly over the passing years TD, for me, slowly failed to do. Don't get me wrong TD has made some great music since 1975 but after 1978 the style change and the soundscape were not as lush or as warm as illustrated here.
Part 1 takes a while building up layers and creating the necessary space for a sombre atmosphere. Sounds drift in and out of your speakers with potent textures conjouring up a bleak landscape in the middle of winter at the Manor Studios. Then the magic of the Big Moog sweeps in like never before and off we go into pure synthesised sequences. Organs and mellotrons battle and tease for a place in the mix and all the time Franke plays with the filter to keep it all on the boil. If you were there in 1975 I think you would have been amazed.
Part 2 heaves, sighs and groans into action until a sawtooth fanfare brings in Chris in exception mood (moog) and again we are off on a magical ride thru your imagination. The ending is drawing to a close far too quickly with an ARP2600 processiong sounds of the sea mixed alongside lush strings and that mellotron flute floating thoughtful over the top.
If you enjoyed Phaedra this may be percived as a alternative direction to the one you might of expected from The Dream. It isn't as defined or as spacey as the '74 hit but for me was a neccessary step a culmination to date of all the things they had done on one record. However, like all TD albums, each one is unique and has its own space in the TD history books BUT savour the atmosphere created by these three muscians on what was basically a 'Rock' album although more akin to say Debussy's sound paintings then to Pink Floyd.
No other group have ever got this close or as brave since.
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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 30 years ahead of it's time, 25 July 2006
This review is from: Rubycon (Audio CD)
I bought this album when it first came out in 1975. At the time, there was nothing on the planet like Tangerine Dream. This was the sound of the future. Synths and sequencers were in their infancy and this was the cutting edge of what was possible. I remember countless 2am listens with the lights low and the (now) vintage system pumping out the soundscapes which seemed to suck you in and transport you to another world.
Listening to it today, it still sounds fresh. Although far from rhythm led, the rounded, warm, sequenced rhythms when they appear are the seeds of the pure kind of techno that Richie Hawtin or Jeff Mills would be happy to mix into a set. Future Sound of London must have spent countless hours taking notes.
To any Ambient Techno fan of the Basic Channel/Tresor persuasion I urge you to buy this to discover your heritage. It aint Techno, but musicologists would argue that, with it's purely synthetic vistas, it was pivotal in paving the way.

Come and take this journey, courtesy of analogue synths, which will take you on a widescreen soundscape journey, over high waterfalls of synth washes down rhythmic pulsing pathways to rainbow light-washed clearings.
Time has been kind to this album, which in my opinion is the cream from band of sonic pioneers at their absolute best...classic status has been justly earned.
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The MIGHTY Tangerine Dream Classic!, 19 July 2006
By 
DSR (out beyond the sticks) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Rubycon (Audio CD)
I LOVE this album!!!

This is the second of the trilogy of albums that make up, what is for me, Tangerine Dream's mid seventies golden age and is regarded by many fans as their greatest album of this era, if not all time! Things were to change dramatically once Peter Baumann left the group. It suffered at the time from being pressed on variable quality vinyl and is another that sounds better than ever in its "definitive" CD remaster. Like the other TD releases of this period, I find I can listen over and over again and find something new each time to enjoy.

The two pieces comprising this album seem a little more considered and "rehearsed" than the previous, still mind blowing release, Phaedra, which seems a little more cold and spontaneous by comparison and I think with hindsight it's a better album for it. Each piece has an improvised, atmospheric beginning, flowing seamlessly into the main, middle sequenced sections; part one's throbbing sequences beautifully and gently fading away to the tracks conclusion into well treated piano sounds. Part two (for years my favourite) first sets a mood not unlike pieces from "2001", gently blending into some sublime sequencing, which, at its end, fades with some wonderfully simple yet effective chords into a phased, sea shore, the waves washing over the fading chords that complete this section. the album finishes with a delightful "fluted" melody that reminds me of "Sequent c" and, also, "The Lark Ascending" and it always brings a meditative tear to my eye... One would never realise that each part of this album was skillfully edited and blended from around 20 hours of recordings - this is a real work of genius, both in the performance and in the skillful editing together.

It's often possible, with hindsight, to hear the sounds contributed by each band member, as their subsequent solo work has shown the different parts of the "whole". There's a powerful beauty here, rarely matched by other artists of the genre at the time, or since.

Altogether, a truly sublime, beautifully realised album to chill out to, whatever the mood or times. This music touches your very soul and once hooked, you'll play this regularly for life, as with so much output from this band over the years.

Could this be Tangerine Dream's best ever record? It's certainly my overall favourite and is up there with the very best work they've ever released. It sounds as fresh and involving now as it did back then, as it was so expertly created.

RECOMMENDED with passion!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Rubycon still has elbows!, 7 May 2008
By 
Steve Benner "Stonegnome" (Lancaster, UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Rubycon (1975) (Audio CD)
33 years since I first heard it, Tangerine Dream's "Rubycon" still has the power to send shivers down my spine! Their second album for Virgin records, and consisting of just a single 35-minute work (split in the middle for the old vinyl side-change, of course) this is perhaps the most symphonic of Tangerine Dream's works. It is certainly, even now, the most beautiful and the most elegantly structured, as well as the most mystical, with its soaring, contemplative mellotron choirs, lush tam-tam rolls and hypnotic pulse-laden textures. It is also the least overtly 'pop' in style and steadfastly refuses classification even now. Haunting and delicate synthesiser motifs blend with the sounds of prepared pianos and custom modified organs and other electronics, all of which ensure a uniqueness to the sound world which no-one has ever come close to emulating. A superb mastery of minimalist rhythmic patterns, together with a perfect sense of timing in the development of their material and knowing just when to introduce new elements combine to make this a truly great masterpiece that is set to live forever.

This newly remastered edition is a joy to hear, too. Although some parts of the quiet opening passage remain a little murky, many of the technical problems of the original have been more or less eliminated (or at least substantially reduced) and the louder passages have come up an absolute treat. The flanging of the recorded beach-breakers in the middle of Part II comes through beautifully, too--much clearer than on older releases. The rather raggy ending of the original has been tidied up too and I think Virgin are fully justified in labelling this release as the definitive edition!

At less than 35 minutes overall, this CD remains as scandalously stingy as it ever was, but its beauty soon forces you to forgive it this failing. Own it! Treasure it! Short it may be, but it is oh, so sweet!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Their best album, 21 April 2012
By 
feline1 (Brighton, Sussex, UK) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Rubycon (Audio CD)
In my view, this was Tangerine Dream's finest album: before it, their music was a bit too clumsy and unstructured; after it, it was too clean and polished. Rubycon is the perfect midpoint: all their classic sonic techniques - analogue sequencer riffs, mellotrons, cavernous reverb, beautiful spacey synth soundeffects... but crafted into two excellent proper pieces of music, with a definite structure and progression.

However, never mind about that, everyone will have their own favourite Tangerine Dream album - what I want to mention specifically here is the 1995 'Definitive Edition' remaster by Simon Heyworth. I ripped WAVs off this disc and my original Virgin CD of the album (which is so old, it was the type with an opaque pastel blue coating on the non-playing side). Doing an A/B comparison in an audio editor, Heyworth's 1995 remaster is pretty unequivocably an improvement. There's no 'loudness wars' nonsense going on, the music is allowed to peter out into silence as per the original - just a cleaner, better quality transfer from the master tape, with extended high and bottom ends, and a modest volume increase (but no clipping or compression). Nothing radical, no huge sonic changes, but just noticeably better quality.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Still exciting and innovative ..., 23 Oct. 2013
By 
os - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Rubycon (Audio CD)
'Rubycon' took the idea of electronic keyboard music away from the 'straight' virtuoso playing associated with Prog Rock and moved it into the relatively uncharted waters of dreamy amorphous sound-scapes and dramatic rhythmic pulse. Released originally in 1975 it sounds a fresh today as it must done way back then, even given the obvious advances in technology, both instrumental and recording. And that is because of how the players combine and use the studio to produce what is essentially a collage of themes and effects that makes this album much more then a just a quaint period piece.

This is musical form as exploration and discovery. The listener is on a musical journey. He or she will witness as they go how the various segments arrive, develop- sometimes in airy welcoming fashion, sometimes darkly Gothic ,and then melding with new musical elements before dissolving into the ether as their task is done. It is difficult to imagine, but this complex shifting musical apparition in two parts is the work of just three keyboardists. It's a beautifully imaginative piece of work - that however many times gets played, will never bore.`Rubycon' certainly deserves to be heard by a new generation of listeners.Highly recommended.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars truly indispensable, 27 May 2006
By 
This review is from: Rubycon (Audio CD)
This is my favourite album. I first heard it on radio caroline

back in 1975 through waves of static and other stations drifting in and out. I immediately purchased it and gave it a spin.It`s easy to be blase about synth mucic now it is everywhere,from tv commercials to supermarkets,but back then this might as well have been music from another planet.edgar froese,chris franke and peter baumann created a two-part electronic symphony quite unlike anything the general music-loving public were used to at the time.the music ebbs and flows

with eerie organ interludes and mellotron passages,all underpinned by chris franke`s sequencers burbling and gyrating.

the album comes to an end with crashing waves and an astonishingly beautiful neo oriental section with soothing synths and mellotron flutes taking the listener to the fabled

land of hypernod.

If you have an interest in electronic music

this is where it took off,lovers of modern ambient,trance and

techno will be comfortable with this album, for lovers of synth

music it doesn`t get an y better than this.

just buy it!
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best of the studio work, 30 Mar. 2007
By 
Barry Lees (Greenock, Strathclyde Scotland) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Rubycon (Audio CD)
I first heard this in my last year at school. Some of you may remember when it was trendy to walk about the school with a few l.p.s under your arm (usually Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin or The Who). Tangerine Dream were COMPLETELY new - and it did no harm to be in on the start of a new thing. I probably heard bits of it on Alan Freeman's Saturday p.m. radio show (where we all got our musical education) and saved up to buy my own copy (on cassette! - well, they WERE £2.43 as opposed to vinyl's £2.38!).

Great to know that this classic of analogue synthesiser music is now available on compact disc, free from muffled playback and horrendous tape hiss or scratchy vinyl. I'm not going to try and describe how the different sounds on the album progress other than to say that the full gamut of synth. sounds is there, but with an emphasis on the rich, full choral 'clouds' of Moog and Mellotron and masterful use of Franke's sequencer. Please DON'T try to use this as "ambient" background music; it's far too important a recording for that and deserves your full attention.

Keyboards are the main - or only - instruments used, but they sound nothing like the keyboards employed by Rick Wakeman whose synthesisers are simply modern equivalents of the grand piano he learned to play to such popular, yet 'virtuoso', level. Tangerine Dream employed synthesisers in an entirely different way to create a wholly new sound experience.

The overall length is rather short and it's a pity that, in the days of the c.d., no attempt was made to "join up" Part 1 with Part 2 (from the days of the old l.p. side change). A pity also that this most creative incarnation of the group split up with Baumann pursuing a none-too-successful music studio career and Froese spitting poison at Franke from the Tangerine Dream Web site these days.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the golden middle ground of rubycon, 9 Jan. 2011
By 
Deven Gadula (san francisco, ca, united states) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Rubycon (Audio CD)
It is probably fair to say that Rubycon still captures the ambient atmospheric background in a way much more similar to Alpha Centauri, Zeit, Atem and Phaedra, then to following it Ricochet, Stratosfear and later albums, when ambient sections were becoming movements adding meaning to and slowing the overall flow of songs. Rubycon also has more melodic rhythm periods in common with Ricochet, Stratosfear, Encore, Cyclone and Force Majeure than any of the above mentioned earlier albums of Tangerine Dream do. In that sense Rubycon could be considered a perfect middle of the road album of the golden decade of Tangerine Dream.

Rubycon is one huge texture of sound consisting of interchanging ambient and rhythmic segments. This album is a perfect variation on a theme by three gifted and well connected players who introduce their ideas and elaborate on them in various ways. The beginning and closing minutes feel very classical in the way the composition is constructed with every key pressed as needed, to create this amazing mood. The music of the middle sections of the album does allow the players to be more spontaneous with the way they introduce their solo motifs and how they elaborate on them. However, all of them conform to the previously agreed upon and clearly defined structure of harmony and rhythm. This music is almost completely synthesizer, organ, piano and mellotron created, with very slight guitar parts in it. Prior to recording of this album Edgar Froese's mellotron got equipped with orchestral instruments recorded by the BBC. The sounds of oboe, horns and string sections add to our experience. Christopher Franke's double Moog synthesizer is completely mastered by him by now, and it is in charge of the rhythmic parts of this composition. Peter Baumann's piano and organ solos can be recognized by their simple and playful charm.

Atmospheric introduction and build-up of the first seven minutes, with its spectacular 'awakening motif' coming to expression repeatedly in the 3rd minute is the proof of Tangerine Dream's mastery of mood creation. Whenever I listen to Rubycon forgetting about this amazing upcoming motif I can hardly believe that the entire introduction to it takes only two minutes. That ambient build-up is so well structured and developed that it possesses an amazing ability of slowing down time. That obviously had been one of the main powers within the ambient sections of Tangerine Dream's 1970s music. The entire seven beginning minutes of this album (as well as seven ending minutes of it) are truly spectacular, but you will not know that while listening to it for the first or second time. This music really needs to sink into you deeper than that to reveal itself fully. Edgar Froese introduces a voice of choir for just 2 seconds at 5:50. The way the following section of sequenced rhythm loops starts at about 6:15 is again, very unique and memorable. After that the sequencer gradually takes over the loops of rhythm and for the following 9 minutes it is a fast pace environment which slowly comes down within the last 2 minutes of first part of Rubycon.

The second part of Rubycon begins in ambient atmospheric way again with the inclusion of the choir sounds generated by Edgar Froese on mellotron. In the 5th minute the tempo of Christopher Franke's sequenced rhythm becomes very fast and vibrant. The synthesizer motif of the 10th minute is very interesting. Then everything slows down again, the sequenced rhythm loops quiet down and in the 12th minute we are taken back into the very atmospheric ambient and spectacular ending of this album. No wonder Tangerine Dream were asked over and over again to provide music for soundtracks. That ending six minutes of Rubycon carries a real power to move us instantly out of our surroundings and to position us somewhere else completely. Unfortunately, working for Hollywood couldn't have been done with the passion they expressed working for us and for themselves.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Rubycon still has elbows!, 7 May 2008
By 
Steve Benner "Stonegnome" (Lancaster, UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Rubycon (Audio CD)
33 years since I first heard it, Tangerine Dream's "Rubycon" still has the power to send shivers down my spine! Their second album for Virgin records, and consisting of just a single 35-minute work (split in the middle for the old vinyl side-change, of course) this is perhaps the most symphonic of Tangerine Dream's works. It is certainly, even now, the most beautiful and the most elegantly structured, as well as the most mystical, with its soaring, contemplative mellotron choirs, lush tam-tam rolls and hypnotic pulse-laden textures. It is also the least overtly 'pop' in style and steadfastly refuses classification even now. Haunting and delicate synthesiser motifs blend with the sounds of prepared pianos and custom modified organs and other electronics, all of which ensure a uniqueness to the sound world which no-one has ever come close to emulating. A superb mastery of minimalist rhythmic patterns, together with a perfect sense of timing in the development of their material and knowing just when to introduce new elements combine to make this a truly great masterpiece that is set to live forever.

This newly remastered edition is a joy to hear, too. Although some parts of the quiet opening passage remain a little murky, many of the technical problems of the original have been more or less eliminated (or at least substantially reduced) and the louder passages have come up an absolute treat. The flanging of the recorded beach-breakers in the middle of Part II comes through beautifully, too--much clearer than on older releases. The rather raggy ending of the original has been tidied up too and I think Virgin are fully justified in labelling this release as the definitive edition!

At less than 35 minutes overall, this CD remains as scandalously stingy as it ever was, but its beauty soon forces you to forgive it this failing. Own it! Treasure it! Short it may be, but it is oh, so sweet!
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Rubycon
Rubycon by Tangerine Dream (Audio CD - 1995)
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